Okay everyone, today I will tell you about my weekend at Spring Gaming Hoopla, March 25th & 26th, 2009. This is a smaller, but growing, convention that is located in Lake Como, Wisconsin. (Just a stones throw from Lake Geneva.) The convention was held at the Como Clubhouse. The Clubhouse is a good sized building with ample lighting, cathedral ceiling, fireplace, large kitchen area & a bar room. There is plenty of parking, enough for fourty cars+. The main hall is large enough to accomodate 30, or more, standard (2'x6') gaming tables. You can even fit another 3 or 4 tables in the bar room, for those that don't like to travel to far for a drink. Your host for this weekend of gaming goodness is a group known as 'Southern Lakes Area Gamers', (S.W.A.G.). What a great bunch of people. All the money SWAG earns at the convention is donated to the American Cancer Society. A very noble cause & one close to my heart as I lost both my parents to this evil disease. Saturday gaming was from 8:00 am-10:00 pm, so naturally the Mrs. & I got there about 7:50am & got a parking spot right out front. Upon entering we were warmly greeted by one of the staff members. (You could tell they were a staff member because they had on a T-shirt that said 'Staff' on it.) We paid our entrance fee, a measley $10.00 for the entire weekend, received our 'con-bag', were shown the board of gaming events & told to have fun. With con-bags in hand we went in search of a table to claim our squatters rights. All the tables had schedules on them listing the times that the table(s) would be needed for an event. This was very convenient as we were able to find a table without any events planned for that day. We plopped ourselves down & pulled out "Adventurer". We play for about two hours with quite a few interruptions from the convention goers, happily explaining the game & answering all questions asked. (No charge, Kerry.) It was time for a break & to examine our con-bags. We opened our bags & found some advertisrments, from the convention sponsors, three square gaming chits with a page of vague explainations & other goodies. My Mrs. had a coupon good for "one roll of the ribbon dice", which she turned in at the registration desk, rolled the dice, & won a coupon. Set up on two tables where many different items, games, books, etc; each with corresponding bags. Into these bags is where you placed the tickets you had won. (AH!! A game of chance!) This brought out the gambler in me so, I purchased $5.00 worth of rolls & won 16 tickets. It was at this time that Momma asked me if I had won any ribbon rolls. I told her "No", all I had in my bag was a "stupid picture of some game called Battue." DUH!!! (My mother often said sometimes I could be a little dense.) Momma grabbed the picture & ran up to the front desk to claim our prize. The rest of the day was spent playing Battue, eating, talking with other convention goers & doing what we were told to do when we walked through the doors. WE HAD FUN!! On sunday, we went back with a family member in tow & they also won a game in their con-bag. Rolled more ribbon dice, won a set of autographed books by Jean Rabe, gamed, ate, bought a couple of T-shirts & had more fun! It was near the end of the convention when we found out that this group would be having another 'Gaming Hoopla' the last weekend in September. I know where we'll be that weekend! For more information about this convention visit them at http://www.gaminghoopla.com. Hope to see you there.